Captain Underpantscreator Dav Pilkey will serve as one of the judges for this year’s Doodle for Google contest.
Pilkey joins music producer Peter CottonTale and Tabatha Rosproy, the National Teacher of the Year, on the judging panel for the contest, in which students submit art that will be used for one day as a Google Doodle on the main search page. The winning artist will also receive a $30,000 college scholarship as well as “fun Googley swag.”
Pilkey is himself an artist; his illustrations feature in his Captain Underpants and Dog Man books. His work is hugely popular with young readers; two of his titles were among the bestselling print books of 2020.
The 2021 theme for the contest, now in its 13th year, is “I am strong because…”
“We’re asking students to creatively share how they keep moving forward when things get tough,” Google senior brand manager Jane Woodall said in an announcement. “When you make mistakes or get scared, what helps you clear the clouds above your head?”
Woodall praised Pilkey and the rest of the “impressive” judging panel.
“Dav explores themes like kindness, courage, empathy and doing good in his unique graphic novels, and he recently created a series of read-aloud and how-to-draw videos to encourage kids to be creative,” Woodall noted.
Students interested in submitting art for the contest can find instructions on how to enter on the Google website.
Michael Schaub is a Texas-based journalist and regular contributor to NPR.